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Cuomo hires defense lawyer in nursing home probe

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Now facing multiple investigations, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has hired a criminal defense lawyer to represent his office in a federal probe into COVID-19 deaths in state nursing homes.

That announcement by his spokesperson on Monday.

Earlier the same day a third woman accused the Democratic governor of inappropriate behavior, saying he asked to kiss her at a wedding reception.

Two other women, both former aides to Cuomo, last week went public with claims he engaged in a series of unwanted, sexually suggestive comments, and in one case an unsolicited kiss.

On Sunday, he apologized if his remarks or behavior were misinterpreted as flirtation and said he never meant to make anyone feel uncomfortable.

New York Attorney General Letitia James said her office would oversee an independent probe into the allegations.

The governor shot to national popularity for his aggressive and outspoken efforts to handle the coronavirus pandemic.

But a recent report alleging he may have undercounted deaths in nursing homes threatens to tarnish that image, even before the accusations of sexual misconduct emerged.

The U.S. Justice Department is investigating COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes. A report in January said New York State misrepresented those deaths early in the pandemic.

Video Transcript

- Now facing multiple investigations, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has hired a criminal defense lawyer to represent his office in a federal probe into COVID-19 deaths in state nursing homes. That announcement by his spokesperson on Monday. Earlier the same day, a third woman accused the Democratic governor of inappropriate behavior, saying he has to kiss her at a wedding reception. Two other women, both former aides to Cuomo, last week went public with claims he engaged in a series of unwanted sexually suggestive comments and in one case an unsolicited kiss. On Sunday, he apologized if his remarks or behavior were misinterpreted as flirtation and said he never meant to make anyone feel uncomfortable. New York Attorney General Letitia James said her office would oversee an independent probe into the allegations.

ANDREW CUOMO: You know, this virus, they're just studying it now.

- The governor shot to national popularity for his aggressive and outspoken efforts to handle the coronavirus pandemic, but a recent report alleging he may have undercounted deaths in nursing homes threatens to tarnish that image, even before the accusations of sexual misconduct emerged. The US Justice Department is investigating COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes. A report in January said New York state misrepresented those deaths early in the pandemic.